Melia Benn spent an entire year watching a man she thought might be her father walk past her.
She'd order from the same barista at around 7am every morning while the same homeless man wandered past as he left the nearby Diversionary Centre, a service set up for those at risk of being taken into custody for public intoxication offences.
It was their little routine, carried out completely independently of each other.
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In her late 20s at the time, Melia hadn't had contact with her father since she was around four.
But there was something about the homeless man's features that made her think it just might be him.
It was her auntie - her father's sister that confirmed her hunch one day - when they were having breakfast at a cafe in the city and the man walked past.
He'd left the family home in Cairns due to alcoholism and allegations of domestic violence.
For this reason, Melia kept her distance.
When her father left, if made it a lot harder for Melia and her sister to stay connected to their cultural roots.
"It's a funny thing to sort of differentiate your culture from your identity. So I've always known that I'm Aboriginal. I've always felt Aboriginal. But unfortunately, I never grew up immersed in cultural practices or anything like that," Melia told Mamamia.
It's why the 32-year-old feels particularly proud to be one of only two female Indigenous barristers in the entire state of Queensland. As an adult, she's finally getting to know her community properly, while representing them in court.
"That's the edge I have when solicitors brief me. An example of that is a couple of weeks ago, I was brought on to a legal team for a woman who's been accused of stabbing her partner, and she has requested specifically for an Aboriginal woman. And that's to assist with communication and things like that while giving her a culturally safe space."
When Melia was studying law, she had no intention of going to the bar. But in 2018 she met Joshua Creamer, an Indigenous barrister who told her about the urgent need for women with an Indigenous background on his team.